In susceptible mouse strains, the wild-type Daniel's (wt-DA) strain of Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus induces a persistent central nervous system (CNS) infection with chronic demyelination. The virus is cleared from resistant mice with no resulting demyelination. We characterized the role of the DAL* protein in late demyelination and persistent infection. The DA genome has two alternative reading frames, encoding the virus polyprotein and L*, respectively. The mutant virus DAL*-1 fails to synthesize L* and does not persist in the CNS of wt-DA-susceptible SJL/J or B10.S mice. Since class I-restricted cytotoxicity has been shown to determine resistance to virus persistence and demyelination in this model, virus-specific cytotoxicity in the CNS of DA-resistant (B6 or B10) and -susceptible (SJL/J and B10.S) mice during the acute stage of DA and DAL*-1 infection was characterized. Following intracerebral inoculation with DAL*-1, virus-specific D(b)- and K(b)-restricted CTLs were demonstrated in the CNS of resistant B10 mice, whereas only D(b)-restricted CTL were found in wt-DA-inoculated mice. CTLs specific to wt-DA or DAL*-1 recognized class I-presented peptides from either of the viruses. Of particular interest, K(s)-restricted virus-specific cytotoxicity-restricted CTLs were identified in the CNS of susceptible SJL/J (H-2(s)) and B10.S (H-2(s)) mice inoculated with DAL*-1. In contrast, no virus-specific CTLs were identified in the CNS of SJL/J and B10.S mice inoculated with wt-DA. We propose that L* inhibits the generation of H-2K- restricted virus-specific cytotoxicity in the CNS, permitting a persistent infection in susceptible strains, with subsequent inflammatory demyelination in the CNS similar to that in human multiple sclerosis.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Journal of Immunology|
|State||Published - Jan 1 1999|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy